Health & Safety

February 27, 2014

Simple tips Airmen should ‘take to heart’

Senior Airman Zachary Vucic
Air Force News Service

FORT GEORGE G. MEADE, Md. (AFNS) — February is designated American Heart Month with the mission to increase awareness about heart health, a growing problem within the Air Force, according to a cardiology consultant to the Air Force surgeon general.

Lt. Col. Samuel O. Jones said that in the medical community, heart issues are no longer thought of as a problem exclusively for older patients. More and more, inactivity in the nation’s youth is causing heart problems at younger ages, a problem that can be as damaging as smoking, he said. In some cases, unhealthy plaque buildup around the heart can start in a patient’s teens.

“Airmen have to … follow the basic tenets of a healthy lifestyle,” he said.

An important, yet often overlooked, aspect of that healthy lifestyle is found in how one goes about his or her day-to-day business, he said. The modern American lifestyle of fast food and development of technologies that make life easier, has contributed noticeably to increased inactivity.

Here are a few simple, everyday things that can increase daily heart-healthy activity:

Park further away when you visit the commissary and walk. Those few extra paces will add up quickly and require less than one minute of added time to your errand

If work has you pinned to a desk, consider standing for periods of time. The Centers for Disease Control suggests the benefits of periodically standing can increase blood flow, burn more calories, and assist with energy balance and aid in weight management, all of which benefit heart health

Take the stairs whenever possible, forego the elevators and escalators. Taking the stairs requires little additional time and benefits overall health

Try to avoid getting sucked into electronic targets such as smartphones in your free time, take a walk instead

At minimum, exercise for 30 minutes, three times per week.

“It’s not about making your life easier, it’s about making your life healthier,” Jones said. “Sometimes by making our lives easier we are actually killing ourselves.”

According to the CDC website, about 715,000 Americans suffer a heart attack annually, and another 600,000 die from heart disease, the leading cause of death in both men and women. The signs of heart-related problems range from very subtle to extreme in some cases.

Jones urged Airmen who may experience chest pain, dizziness or passing out, to get evaluated. Even if it turns out to be nothing, it still produces peace of mind. Other ways to be proactive about heart health include getting regular blood pressure and cholesterol checks, avoiding tobacco products, lowering salt intake, avoiding fast foods, and if you currently have diabetes, managing it properly.

This February, evaluate your lifestyle and decide if you are doing everything you can to prevent heart-related problems. A few extra steps a day will not make life more difficult, but it will make you healthier. Challenge yourself for the benefit of yourself. For more information regarding heart health, visit the Air Force Medical Service website.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
FoodBank_pict

Commissary food bank donations top 4 million pounds

FORT LEE, Va. – In a classic case of a crisis creating an opportunity, the government shutdown of 2013 served as a catalyst to revive donations from military commissaries to local food banks, with the stores donating more tha...
 
 
DoD
Equality_pict

Women’s Equality Day commemorates history, bridges future leaders

WASHINGTON (AFNS) — Women’s Equality Day, Aug. 26, not only commemorates the ratification of the 95th anniversary of the 19th Amendment — which solidified women’s voting rights — but it also coincides with...
 
 
DoD
ArmyDepot

Army Depot explosion in Japan remains under investigation

WASHINGTON — The cause of an explosion and the resulting large fire at a storage building early today at the Army’s Sagami General Depot in Sagamihara City, Japan, remains under investigation, Pentagon spokesman Navy Capt....
 

 
AAFES_pict

Shopping the Exchange pays $224 million in dividends

DALLAS – The Army & Air Force Exchange Service paid a dividend of $224 million in 2014 to morale, welfare and recreation efforts for the Army, Air Force, Marine Corps and Navy. In the past 10 years, the Exchange has prov...
 
 
3D_pict

To print a missile: Raytheon research points to 3-D printing for tomorrow’s technology

The day is coming when missiles can be printed.  Researchers at Raytheon Missile Systems say they have already created nearly every component of a guided weapon using additive manufacturing, more commonly known as 3-D printing...
 
 
U.S. Air Force photo/Scott M. Ash

AF Senior leaders give State of the Air Force address

WASHINGTON (AFNS) — Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James and Chief of Staff of the Air Force Gen. Mark A. Welsh III held a State of the Air Force address at the Pentagon, Aug. 24. The first topic of discussion w...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>